When the network recently announced its lineup of reporters and producers that will cover the campaign trail, one Twitter user noted what many agreed with: “It lacks representation from the largest minority group in the nation.”
The former “Scandal” actress took to Twitter to voice her frustration with the lack of representation. She wrote:
“Dear @CBS News, I am encouraged by the diversity you DID include. But when it comes time to discuss the inevitable role that race and racism will play in the election, who will you turn to for a perspective with nuanced & personal understanding of the African American experience?”
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Dear @CBSNews, I am encouraged by the diversity you DID include. But when it comes time to discuss the inevitable role that race and racism will play in the election, who will you turn to for a perspective with nuanced & personal understanding of the African American experience? https://t.co/yqViF535oY
— kerry washington (@kerrywashington) January 13, 2019
The lineup of eight campaign reporters and four producers does not have any Black journalists. There are, however, several other minorities represented.
“Wow. I’m sure some exec somewhere looked at this and thought, “Hey! We’ve got a guy with an Arab name, a woman with a Latinx name, and an Asian! How diverse!” That exec is wrong,” wrote Twitter user N. K. Jemison.
User @Lexialex said: “If we have to get some non-whites, make them men. A couple of Asians and one of them A-rabs. That should do.”
And Auntie Maxine wrote: “CBS, the efforts on your website about your support for diversity flies in the face of your display of all of the reporters you’ve selected for the 2020 campaign. Not one black. What’s up with this? An explanation is needed.”
Many others agreed with Waters and Washington:
This is a disgrace. And you’re proud?
— roxane gay (@rgay) January 13, 2019
Im embarrassed for you.
— Kellee Terrell (@kelleent) January 12, 2019
As reported by Yahoo, this isn’t the first time Washington has called out CBS News about its lack of diversity.
Back in December, she mentioned the network during a speaking engagement at The Wing. “Come along for the ride, CBS,” she said, encouraging the news team to embrace a woman of color.
— Kendall Ciesemier (@kciesemier) December 6, 2018
Meanwhile, Twitter user @kiesehansen said of the mostly white team of newly assembled reporters that will be covering the 2020 election:
“A lot of these comments say “you couldn’t find one?” but we really should be asking, you couldn’t find at least two?? & I say that for all demographics that need to be represented. It’s 2019. No more being the ONLY one on a team, in the room, etc.”
Another commenter tweeted the network directly asked, “Does CBS stand for Caucasian Broadcasting Service now? Did we miss the memo?”